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Employee Engagement: An Important Piece to Overcoming Labor Shortage

Employee Engagement: An Important Piece to Overcoming Labor Shortage

Nearly all businesses are feeling the effects of America’s labor shortage. As aging workers retire, there are fewer younger workers being hired in their place, and according to economists, hiring will remain challenging for years to come.

While these challenges are present in many industries, skilled labor is among the most impacted. In the case of field service, fewer people are entering the field compared to years past, and many that do enter the field don’t necessarily view it as a lifelong career. In fact, over 70% of field service companies say they are currently experiencing a skills shortage gap, and analysts predict this shortage will surpass 3 million by 2027.

Free Playbook: Overcoming the Technician Talent Shortage

The Growing Field Service Worker Shortage

Due to the growing technician shortage, finding skilled labor for service jobs is harder than ever. 47% of field service companies are having trouble getting enough quality technicians to meet business goals.

The low number of younger people entering the field is not the only factor contributing to the shortage. In the aftermath of the pandemic, employees of all ages are looking for more flexibility and a better work-life balance. Field service jobs often require workers to be onsite and available at odd hours, so there is less opportunity to work remotely or create a truly flexible schedule. Add in the physical demands of many field service jobs, and finding people to commit to a lifetime career as a field service worker can be quite challenging.

In addition to trying to attract people to the field, the industry is trying to navigate its aging workforce. With nearly 25% of construction workers over the age of 55, retirements will continue to increase the labor and skills shortage. The refined skills and efficiency of experienced workers cannot quickly or easily be replaced.

However, the future does not have to look grim. Attracting and retaining the right employees is one way field service organizations (FSO) can address the challenge of worker and skills scarcities.


The Case for Employee Engagement

In addition to fair compensation and benefits, employees in any industry typically rank personal well-being, the ability to do what they do best, and recognition among their top priorities in a job. To attract and retain top workers into the field service industry, it’s important to also pay attention to things like modern mobility tools, easy communication channels, increased productivity, and opportunities to learn. And don’t overlook one of the easiest things to offer employees: respect.

Those who feel respected at work are 55% more engaged in their work and are 10% more likely to stay with their organizations. Studies repeatedly show that employee engagement has a direct impact on worker satisfaction, employee retention, and customer experience.

Engaged workers are less likely to miss work and experience burnout, which means they are less likely to leave their company. This translates into cost savings, as finding, hiring, and training new employees is a huge expense. Engaged workers are also more likely to improve focus and productivity, deliver higher quality work, and offer a better service experience to their customers. All of this results in higher revenue.


Strategies to Engage Field Service Workers

Field service workers want to be empowered with autonomy and proper resources to do their job successfully and efficiently. Generally, the younger generation embraces modern technology, and as young people are typically adept at learning new technology, FSOs have an advantage of leveraging modern field service management (FSM) tools to engage their technicians and enhance the worker experience.


Employ mobility tools

The best FSM software gives field service workers control over things like access to their schedules, checking inventory from the road, and collecting payment on-site. With FSM enablement tools directly on their mobile devices, they can easily view and manage parts, and access real-time and historical data.

Predictive analytics and artificial intelligence can anticipate and diagnose problems offsite and recommend corrective action, allowing technicians to show up prepared for the job. They can also access guided troubleshooting information to resolve problems that arise. Combined, a field service worker’s time spent on a job will decrease and their first-time fix rate will improve, along with their confidence and engagement in their work.


Minimize travel time

Driving to consumers’ homes is part of a field service workers’ day, but wasted travel time doesn’t have to be. Quality FSM software identifies the right field service worker for the job and enhances scheduling and dispatch orders. With its real-time AI-based capabilities, field service workers can trust they are taking the optimum route and avoiding traffic and weather-related delays. Schedule optimization decreases the technician’s stress of dealing with traffic, arriving late to a job site, or spending non-productive hours in the car, all of which improves worker morale.


Improve communication with consumers

As much as consumers want the power to reach their assigned field service workers and track their progress in real-time, the technicians also want to be able to communicate with their customers. Modern FSM solutions provide a consumer portal to allow the parties to be in direct contact with each other. A technician who can text the homeowner and say they’re running late will walk into a more pleasant situation and complete the job to everyone’s satisfaction.


ServicePower, Your Partner in Employee Engagement

When you have more engaged employees, you have happier employees. And that trickles down to satisfied customers and improved revenue. Deploying modern FSM solutions is one way to improve employee morale and engagement, leading to a more efficient, profitable organization.

ServicePower’s configurable field service solutions include a user-friendly consumer portal for self-service and field worker-consumer communication; real-time AI-based schedule optimization; advanced field service worker enablement; and streamlined management of both employed and contracted workforces. And our software was specifically created to integrate into the big CRM and ERP systems you may already be using.

Schedule a meeting with one of our experts and start on your journey to engaged workers.